a Paperback Book
isn't just confined to hardbacks. While it isn't usually cost
effective to rebind a paperback, the monetary value of a book
isn't everything and sometimes there are other reasons to make
it worth while.
of "The Catcher in the Rye" by J D Salinger was given
to me one Christmas. At the time I was a couple of years younger
than Holden Caulfield, the main character. I've lost count of
how many times I read it over the next few years because as
I grew older myself, I saw the book through new eyes each time
I went back to it. As a result, it's become extremely well worn.
I could go out and buy a new copy, but it just wouldn't have
the same memories. Instead, I've decided to give my old copy
hardback, which is made from a series of sections which are sewn
together, a paperback consists of single pages glued together
along the spine. Inevitably this makes the finished book a lot
weaker and more prone to splitting or developing loose pages if
it is well used.
step is to clean off the spine, remove as much of the old glue
as possible and then strengthen the textblock. To strengthen the
text block, the book is put into a press and saw cuts are made
along the length of the spine.
A layer of
PVA is put onto the spine and then thread is sunk into each of
the sawcuts. As an extra reinforcement a layer of scrim (sometimes
called mull) is added. So the spine is now being held together
not just with glue, but with the thread and scrim as well.
is then left for a few days so that the PVA is completely hard
and dry. The finished result will still never be as strong as
a book with sewn sections, but it will be much sturdier than it
glue is completely dry, the excess thread is trimmed off. The
end result is barely visible, but has made a considerable difference
to the strength of the book.
are tipped with paste onto either end of the book and trimmed.
Machine made headbands are glued to either end of the spine.
is made from loose sheets of paper rather than sewn sections,
a paperback cannot be rounded and jointed. Nor can it be given
handsewn headbands, so the next step is to make the case. The
procedure for this is exactly the same as I've already shown on
the Cloth Binding page, so there
is little point in repeating it here.
on the left shows the text block cased in. By
a lucky chance, I had some cloth here which is similar in colour
to the orange of the original paperback cover.
to keep as much of the original book as possible. I've trimmed
the ragged edges of the old cover. The original spine was beyond
repair, although I did manage to salvage the "penguin"
logo, so I've made a new label to run down the length of the spine.
covers have been glued onto the new case and the book is finished.
got my old book with its familiar orange cover, but I no longer
have to worry about it falling apart any when I read it.
Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger was rebound between 3rd July
and 8th July 2007